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§ 4. After a full compliance with the provisions shall be contracted by or on behalf of this State of the first, second, and third sections of this to pay any portion of the State debt that may article, there shall be appropriated, in each fiscal remain unpaid under the provisions of this article year, from the surplus revenues of the canals, unless the law authorizing the creation of such the sum of one million one hundred and sixteen debt, shall itself impose and provide for the col. thousand two hundred and forty-two dollars and lection of a direct annual tax, for the purpose of sixty-six cents, to be added to the sinking fund paying, and suflicient to pay the interest on such Dow existing for the payment of the debt known debt as it falls due, and also to pay and discharge as the enlargement and completion debt, until the principal of such debt, within eighteen years the same is sufficient to pay off and discharge from the time of the contracting thereof. said debt and interest, and the principal and in $ 9. The claims of the State against any incorterest of said sinking fund shall be sacredly ap- porated company, to pay the interest and redeem plied to that purpose.
the principal of the stock of the State heretofore $ 5. After a full compliance with the provisons of loaned or advanced to such company, shall be the first, second, third and fourth sections of this fully enforced, and not released or compromised; article, there shall be appropriated and set apart and the moneys arising from such claims shall be from the revenue of the canals, the sum of $187,- set apart, and applied as part of the sinking fund 500, in each fiscal year, to be added to the sinking provided in the second section of this article. fund, now existing, until the sum, so appropriated 8 10. The credit of the State shall not, in any and set apart, shall be sufficient to pay the princi- manner be given or loaned to, or in aid of any pal and interest of what is known as the floating individual, association, or corporation. The same debt loan; and the principal and income of said restrictions apply to the counties, towns, cities, sinking fund shall be sacredly applied to that pur. and villages of the State. pose
$ 11. No moneys shall ever be paid out of the $ 6. Such portion of the surplus reveuue of the treasury of this State, or any of its funds, or any canals as may remain, after a full compliance with of the funds under its management, except in purthe provisions of the five preceding sections, shall, suance of an appropriation by law; nor unless in each fiscal year, be applied to the payment such payment be made within two years next of the sums which huve been raised by taxation and after the passage of such appropriation act; and drawn from the general fund for canal purposes, every such law making a new appropriation, or until that fund shall be fully reimbursed for all continuing or renewing an appropriation, shall sums so drawn therefrom since the year 1846, distinctly specify the sum appropriated and the with quarterly interest thereon, at the rate of six object to which it is to be applied; and it shall per cent per annum. As the revenues are so not be sufficient for such law to refer to any other received into the treasury they shall be appro- law to fix such sum. priated, or so much thereof as may be necessary $ 12. The State may, to meet casual deficits to the payment of, or to the creation of a sinking or failures in revenues, or for expenses not provi. fund for the ultimate payment of the principal ded for, contract debts; but such debts, direct and and interest of the State debt, known as the bounty contingent, singly or in the aggregate, shall not at debt; and after all the objects provided for any time exceed one million of dollars ; and the in this section and the previous sections of moneys arising from the loans creating such debts this article shall have been accomplished, and the shall be appropriated to the purpose for which several debts and obligations mentioned therein they were obtained, or to pay the debts so conshall have been fully paid and discharged, the tracted, and to no other purpose whatever. tolls upon the canals of the State shall be reduced 8 13. In addition to the above limited power to a rate calculated to produce a revenue suffi. to contract debts, the State may contract debts to cient to meet the expenses of collection, superin- repel invasion, suppress insurrection, or defend tendence and all repairs that may be necessary to the State in war; but the money arising from the keep the canals in good navigable order and con- contracting of such debts shall be applied to the dition, together with the demands of the third purpose for which it was raised, or to repay such section of this article and no more.
debts, and to no other purpose whatever. $7. The Legislature may provide by law, for $ 14. Except the debts specified in the seventh, borrowing any sum of money that may be neces- eighth, twelfth, and thirteenth sections of sary to pay the principal of any portion of the this article, no debts shall be hereafter conexisting debt of the State, including the bounty tracted by or on behalf of this State, undebt, which the revenues of the canals applied as less such debts shall be authorized by a required by the preceding section of this article, law, for some single work or object, to be may fail to meet. and may also authorize the distinctly specitied therein, and such law shall raising, upon temporary loan of money to pay the impose and provide for the collection of a direct deficiency of interest upon any Statë debt; but annual tax to pay, and sufficient to pay the iuternot for a longer period than may be required to est on such debt as it falls due, and also to pay raise the necessary amount by taxation. The and discharge the principal of such debt, within interest on the bounty debt shall continue to be eighteen years from the time of contracting there. paid by means of taxation, as now provided by of; no such law shall take effect until it shall at a law, until the same can be paid from the surplus general election have been submitted to the peorevenues of the canals, under the provisions of ple, and have received a majority of all the votes section five of this article.
cast for and against it, at such election. On the $ 8. After the expiration of twenty years from final passage of such bill in either house of the the time when this article takes effect, no dobt Legielature the question shall be taken by ayes'
and noes, to be duly entered on the Journals the remaining portion of the canal debt of 1846, thereof, and shall be: “Shall this bill pass, the general fund debt, the enlargement and comand ought the same to receive the sanction pletion debt, and the appropriation of $200,000 per of the people?” The Legislaure may at any annum to the general fund, for the support of the time, aster the approval of such law by the peo- State government. ple, if no debt shall have been contracted in At the time of the adoption of the present Conpursuance thereof, repeal the same; and may at stitution, the canals were indebted to the general any time, by law, forbid the contracting of any fund for advances for canal purposes to the further debt or liability under such law; but the amount of about $5,000,000; that debt seems to tax imposed by such act, in proportion to the debt have been compromised by the provision in the and liability which may have been contracted in Constitution requiring a perpetual annual appropursuance of such law, shall remain in force and priation of $200,000, as mentioned above, from be irrepealable, and be annually collected, until the revenues of the canals, to the general fund, the proceeds thereof shall have made the provision for the support of the State gove:nment. hereinbefore specitied, to pay and discharge the The fifth section provides for an appropriation interest and principal of such debt and liability of $187,500 per annum to the sinking fund of The money arising from avy loan or stock creating the floating debt loan, heretofore paid by taxabuch debt or liability shall be applied to the work tion. or object specified in the act authorizing such debt The revenues of the canals have failed to meet or liability, or for the repayment of such debt or the requirements imposed upon them by the presliability, and for no other purpose whatever. No ent Constitution, consequently, there has been such law shall be submitted to be voted on within raised by taxation since 1846, and drawn from * three months after its passage or at any general the General Fund for canal purposes, with interelection, when any other law or any bill, or any est added, about $18,000,000. enactment to the Coustitution, shall be submitted The sixth section provides that after a full com. to be voted for or against.
pliance with the provisions of the five preceding 8 15. Every law which imposes, continues, or sections, that the remaining portion of the net revives a tax, shall distinctly state the tax and revenues of the canals shall be applied to the the object to which it is to be applied; and it payment of the sums raised by taxation and drawa sliall not be sufficient to refer to any other law to from the general fund as stated above, and as the fix such tax or object.
money is received into the treasury, it shall be $ 16. On the final passage in either house of appropriated to the payment of the bounty debt. the Legislature, of every act which imposes, con. It also further provides, that after all the precedtipues or revives a tax, or creates a debt or charge, ing requirements are fulfilled, that the canal tolls or makes, continues cr revives any appropriation shall then be reduced to a rate sufficient only to of public or trust money, or property; or releases, keep the canals in good repair and navigable discharges or commutes any claim or demand of condition. the State, the question shall be taken by ayes and
The seventh section provides that money may noes, which shall be duly entered on the Journals, be borrowed to pay any portion of the State debt, and three-fifths of all the members elected shall, including the bounty debt, that the revenues of in all such cases, be necessary to constitute a the canals may fail to pay, as it matures, and for quorum therein.
the imposition of taxes to pay any deficiency of $ 17. The Legislature shall not sell, leuse or interest that the revenues of the canals may fail otherwise dispose of any of the canals of the to meet. State, but they shall remain the property of the Section eight provides that no money shall bo State and under its management forever.
borrowed after the expiration of twenty-five years The debts of the State, for the payment of which from this time to pay any portion of the State the revenues of the canals are pledged, after de. debt that may then remain unpaid without a producting the unapplied balance of their sinking vision in the act authorizing the loan, requiring funds, were on the first day of July, 1867, as fol. the payment of the principal and interest of the loirs :
debt by taxation within eighteen years thereafter. Canal debt of 1814,
The ninth section provides that the credit of General fand debt,
5,642,622 22 the State shall not be given or loaned to any inAnnual annuity for support of State
dividual, association, or corporation, and that the government...
200,000 00 Enlargement debt,
same restriction shall apply to the counties and Floating debt loan,..
1,211,028 32 towns, and cities and villages of the State. Dubt due general fund for advances for
The other sections are substantially the same canal purposes since 1846, about..... 18,000,000 00
as those in the existing Constitution, relating to The bounty debt on the thirtieth day of June the same subjects. last was $26,940,000. There will be due from the The contributions to the several sinking funds, treasury to the sinking fund of that debt at the now existing, for the payment of the canal debts, close of the present fiscal year, out of the receipts will, by the provisions of the article now submitfrom taxes already collected, a sum sufficient to ted, continue the same as under the existing Con. reduce the principal of the debt considerably stitution, consequently there will be no necessity below $26,000,000.
of making any change in the mode of keeping the By the provisions or the first second, third and accounts or in either of the sinking funds. fourth sections of the article, herewith reported, By the operation of the sinking fund the debts the requirements of the Constitution of 1846, are will be paid as follows: fully carried out in reference to the payment of Canal debt of 1846 in 1868.
General fund debt in 1872.
more appropriate use could be made of the money Floating debt loan in 1872.
when paid into the treasury than to apply it to the Enlargement debt in 1877.
payment of the debts of the State, and thus reTho whole annual requirements to meet the lieve our overburdened people from taxation to obligations imposed upon the revenues of the that extent. canals are $3,366,000. After the payment in The only objectors to this course will probably 1868 of the canal debt of 1846, the requirements be those who advocate an additional enlargement will then be reduced to $2,816,242.66. Under of the Erie and Oswego caual locks. An appropriathe provision of section five of the article herewith tion of the money to such a purpose, would, in the reported, the appropriation of $187,500 per annum view of the undersigned, be injudicious ; and it to the sinking fund of the floating debt loan, is believed, after due consideration, by the Conwhich has heretofore been paid by tàxation, will vention and the people, that the advocates of that be added to the requirements, making the total policy, whether in or out of this Convention, will amount for the next fiscal year $3,003,742.64, and be very few. so continue until 1872, when the general fund The engineer's estimates of the cost of the debt and the floating debt loan will have been enlargement of the Erie and Oswego capal locks paid. From that period, after paying the appro. will be found on page forty-six of the last financial priation of $1,116,242.66 per annum to the report of the Auditor of the Canal Departmout, cnlargement debt sinking fund and $200,000 per as follows: annum to the general fund, the remaining portion of the revenues would be applicable to the pay. inent of the interest of the bounty debt.
CANALS. Stone locks. Wood locke.
Wood and After the payment of the enlargement debt in 1877, the entire net revenues of the canals with the exception of $200,000 per annum, appropri. Erie,... .. $11,902,888 15 $10,718,040 15 $10.985,946 65 ated to the general fuud, would be applicablo to Oswego,.. 2,503,000 DO 1,901, 000 00 2,064,000 MO the payment of the principal and interest of the
$14,405, 888 15 $12,619,040 15 $13,049,946 65 bounty debt. The law authorizing the bounty loan provides for the payment of the principal and interest of the debt by taxation within twelve The Auditor remarks in reference to the esti. years from the time of the passage of the act. mates: “It may be doubtful whether either of The amount to be annually raised to meet the these sums will now be sufficient to pay the cost requisition is about $4,000,000. By the provision of the work, whichever plan may be adopted. authorizing the extension of the loan, nothing The estimates were made in 1863, and while I have more would have to be raised by taxation for the no doubt great care was had in making the measpayment of the principal of the debt.
urements and estimates of quantities, it may be If the revenues of the canals do not exceed questionablo whether the prices used were not $3,000,000 per annum it will be nesessary to below what the work and materials would now raise by taxation a sum sufficient to pay the cost when let to competing bidders.” The cost whole of the interest on that debt, up to the year would probably exceed $20,000,000. 1892, when the general fund debt, and floating The Erie canal was completed in 1825. At that debt loan will have been paid. After that period time the western part of the State was but sparsely the whole of the interest will be paid and provi. settled, and was in fact comparatively a wilder. sion for the payment of the principal of the debt, ness, producing hardly sufficient for its few in. through the operations of its sinking fund, from habitants. Only three of the Western States were the revenues of the canals. The people, therefore, then organized. Until the year 1830, the small from 1872 will be relieved from taxation on surplus of flour, meal, pork, etc., produced in the account of that or any other of the present debts western part of this state, was sent to the then of the State.
territory of Michigan, and to other portions of the It will be observed that under the provisions West, for the subsistence of new settlers. of the article that the people would be at once The astonishing effect of the construction of relieved from the tax of $187.500 per annum, to the Erie canal, in increasing the population pay the appropriation to the sinking fund of the aud in developing the resources of our own floating debt loan, and also from the tax of about State and the great West, was such, that in $2,600,000 per andum now raised to apply in pay a few years it became apparent that the carrying ment of the principal of the bounty debts. The business would soon exceed the then capacity of State taxes, therefore, would bo about $2,800,000 the canal, and provision was made for its enlargeless the next year and thereafter until 1872, than ment. The work of the enlargement was com. they were the last year, and from 1872 until the menced in 1835, and so far completed as to admit bounty debt would have been paid, under the pro- the larger class of boats in 1853. visions of the act authorizing the debt, the tax While, however, the enlargement was in prowould be about $4,000,000 per annum less than gress, the population, wealth and resources of the they were the last year.
country had so vastly increased, of which the It has before been stated that the amount now canal itself had been the occasion and the stimudue the general fund from the revenues of the lus, that the demands of travel and commerce capals is about $18,000,000, and will, with the had covered the land with a net-work of rail. accumulated interest up to the time of its pay- roads. Two roads had been constructed running ment, amount to more than sufficient to pay the parallel with the Erie canal, from tide waters to principal and interest of the bounty debt. No Lake Erie, competitors with the canal for freight,
and superseding it entirely in the transportation The following statement from the Auditor of passengers. There has been, consequently, no report shows the total number of tons delivere considerable permanent increase of freight on the at tide water from the Erie and Champlain canal: Erie canal since 1853. The increase of freight in each year for the last seven years: to and from tide waters, has, since that period, 1860,
2,854, 87 been carried by railroads, and the tendency of 1861,
2,980, 1-4 1862,
8,402, 70 that increase is still steadily in the same direc
3, 274, 12 tion.
3,805, 25 Hon. D. W. C. Littlejohn, Chairman of the 1865,
2,730, 15 Canal Committee of the last Legislature, in a
3,305,00 report in reference to enlarging the locks of the The average increase is only about equal ta Erie and Oswego canal, says:
one boat load in each year. "Latterly the people of this State find very
The following statement, also from the Auditor's little use for their canals. Their surplus products report, shows the number of tons carried on al are small and mostly consumed in the vicinity of of the canals of the State in each year for the their growth by adjacent cities and viliages. The last fourteen years: tonnage going to tide water, the product of this 1853,.
4,217,823 State, has been steadily declining for nearly fif- 1854,
4,022,617 teen years, until the total tolls thereon are scarcely 1866,
4,116,092 half sufficient to pay the expenses of keeping the 1857,
3,341, 061 canals in order; and the merchandise for the 1868,
3,781, 784 interior, purchased at the sea-board, is shipped by 1860,
4,050,21 1 the railroads almost exclusively."
4,507,635 The Auditor's report shows that the number of 1862,
5,598, 785 1863,
5,557,692 tons which arrived at tide-water by the Erie canal
4,852,941 from the State of New York, in 1853, was 637,- 1865,
4,729,654 748; in 1866, only 287,948 tons; and in 1837, 1866, .
5,575, 220 thirty years ago, the quantity was 321,251 tons, The above shows a small average increase, but or 33,303 more than in 1866.
not equal to the increased tonnage of coal and The following statements from the report of the products of the forest mostly upon the lateral Auditor of the Canal Department shows the quan-canals. Tho following statement, also from the tity of wheat and flour which reached the Hudson Auditor's report, shows the number of lockages river by canal, in each year, for the last fourteen to and from the Hudson river, from 1847 to 1866, years:
..54,230 1852, 576,772 1848,
.42, 714 1853, 618,858 1849,
....51,422 1855, 301, 125 1851,
.56, 799 1856, 475,385 1852,
.57,368 1857, 263, 141 1853,
.53,826 1858, 454, 831 1854
.46,787 1859, 250,872 1855,
.38, 319 1860, 710, 138 1856,
46,019 1861, 1,054, 295 1857,
28,374 1862, 1,177, 292 1858,
33,774 1863, 846, 446 1859,
27,874 1864, 606,891 1860,
34,609 1865, 420, 644 1861,
34,594 1866, 289,166 1862,
40, 245 1863,
35,017 The average for the whole period.shows that 1864,
28,993 there has been a small decrease.
29,406 1866, .
30, 226 The following statement from the Auditor's report shows the number of tons moved on the
It will be observed that the greater number of Erie canal in cach year for the last fourteen lockages in any one year of the series, was years:
57,368, in 1852, and that tho lockages in 1866
were only 30,226. 1852,
2,129,834 It further appears, by the Auditor's report, that 1853,
2 196 308 the greatest number of lockages at any one lock 1854, 1855,
2,202,463 on the Erie canal, before the enlargement, was in 1856,
2,107,678 1847, at Alexander's lock, west of Schenectady, 1857,
1,566, 625 then a single lock. The number of boats passed 1858, 1859,
1,753, 954 was 43,957. The double locks at that point are 1860,
2, 253, 533 now capable of passing double the number, or 1861
2,500, 782 87,914 boats, within the time occupied in passing 1862,
the boats in 1847, and each boat, if as large as 1864,
2,535,692 the locks now admit, capable of carrying three 1865,
2,523, 490 times the number of tons that the boats carried 1866,
in 1847. The number of lockages last year (1861) One boat making four round trips in each year at Alexander's double locks wis only one could have carried all of the average increase for 14,075 less boats than pass its the whole period.
240, 655 1850,
It is not necessary to add other statistics to, their interest to diminish the size of boats, and show that there has not been any permanent consequently increase their speed of movement, ucrease, worthy of notice, of tonnage on the rather than increase the size of boats, and consecanals, since the completion of the enlargement. quently diminish their speed. There has been a gain in the quantity of coal and It is admitted that nearly all of the up or westin the products of the forest transported on the ern bound freight is now carried by railroads ; canals, otherwise the aggregate would show a boats, therefore, have but little up freight, and large falling off.
that of a class such as coal, etc., which is carried It is evident that the railroads have carried all at very low rates. It requires thirty days' time the increase of freight for the last fourteen years, for a large boat to make a round trip from Buffalo and that the canals have reached their maximum to Albany and back, including time of loading without having been taxed to the extent of more and discharging cargo. Under such circumstances than one-quarter of their capacity.
it is hardly within the range of probabilities that The State Engineer and Surveyor recommends, there can be any reduction of cost of transportaas a measure to meet the growing demands of our tion on the canals. internal commerce, the enlarging of the locks of In reference to the use of steam on the canals the Erie and Oswego canals. The chief argument as a propelling power, the State Engineer and urged in favor of the measure is that by admit- Surveyor says in his report: ing larger boats the cost of transportation would “The experiments thus far made in the use of be greatly reduced, and the speed of movement steam as a motor have been unsuccessful. This of boats increased.
result is attributable to the want of capacity iu It should be borne in mind that the officer the locks. The room occupied by the power referred to recommends the enlarging of the locks necessary for rapid transit is too great, as comwithout enlarging the canals. Conjectures, there- pared with tho space remaining for stowage of fore, of increased speed under such conditions can cargo to make its use economical. The difficulty have no authority whatever, and as conjectures will be greatly lessened, if not entirely removed, they are rendered of little value, as the results of by the use of the large boats." Now if the diffi experience have shown. A loaded boat of the culty assigned is the only obstacle in the way of size recommended will be equal to a tonnage dis. using steam, it would seem that it could be more placement of 684 tons. Now it has been found easily overcome by using steam tuge, that would practically by forwarders that boats of the size run two boats 100 feet long each, than to expend now in use, which are generally far smaller than say $20,000,000 to try the experiment of propelthe capacity of the locks, cannot be propelled ling a boat 200 feet long with the propelling power with the speed attained by smaller boats before in the boat. The fact is the use of steam has the canals were enlarged. We have a right, been thoroughly tested and proved a failure, by therefore, to believe that, with another enlarge- reason of the boats being already too large for the ment of boats, there would be another diminution size of the canal, tho resistance of the water is of speed.
too great to admit of a propulsion of more than The Auditor in his report shows that the aver- two miles per hour with safety to the canal banks. age time for the passage of boats from Buffalo to When the State debts are paid from the reveAlbany, has increased since the completion of the nues of the canals, the tolls could be reduced to a enlargement, from eight and a half to ten days. point sufficient only to keep the canals in repair. The larger class of boats require twelve days. In that way they would be more formidable com
The tonnage capacity of boats now admitted petitors of railroads than it is otherwise possible through the locks, can certainly be rated as high for them to be. The canals would continue for all as 250 tons, some are registered as high as 300 time to carry coal, lumber, and other freight that tons, and they pass the locks as readily as smaller cannot be easily handled on cars, and have a tenboats. And yet the Auditor's report further dency to keep down the prices of other classes of shows, that the average tonnage of the 485 new freight on the railroads. In this way the canals boats built last year was only 154 tons. After will continue to be of great service to the State, making due allowance for a few smaller class of even after they have ceased to yield a revenue boats built for some of the lateral canals, the new beyond keeping them in repair. boats are not within forty per cent. as large as the The enlargement of the locks would have no locks will admit. With this greater capacity in influence whatever in retaining our ascendency in viting use, and certain to be used if required and transportation. If we rely upon our canal to do profitable, we find this small average of tonnage the carrying trade of the West, a large portion of of new boats built fourteen years after the com- it will be diverted into other channels, and lost to pletion of locks which admit boats of at least one- the State. third more tonnage Our enterprising forwarders Great and important as was the conception of are either failing to appreciate their privileges, or our canal system, it is evident that it has in a too shrewd not to see that their privileges are great measure fulfilled its mission. The progress greater than it is profitable for them to accept. of the country is in advance of the canals; we
The average tonnage of boats built in 1862 was have outgrown their first and more important use. 168 tons; those built in 1863, 177 tons, and those with the exception of a part of the canals of this built in 1864 and 1865 were of considerable less State, it is believed that there is not one in the whole tonnage than those built in the two previous country, owned and operated upon by a State, years, and as previously shown, those built in that is productive. Several canals have been en1866, averaged 154 tons.
tirely abandoned, and not one of the least imporThe above shows that forwarders find it for tance has been constructed within the last twen.